Barcelona Barely Make It to the Copa Final
Talk about feisty!
Barcelona hosted a determined Atlético Madrid in the Copa Del Rey's semi-final second leg and held serve.
That means they moved on with a 3-2 in aggregate as the match ended, 1-1.
The evening's proceedings were nothing if not colorful. As in red and yellow. Not due to a whistle-happy referee, either. Each card raised was well and truly deserved.
It's usually a rare case that Barça have to scrape out a victory from any team, but such was the case here. Atlético literally fought till the very end, but it was all in vain.
Cathartic, though, no doubt.
The cavalcade of bookings got started just after the quarter-hour, when the Blaugrana's Sergi Roberto didn't even try to veil his intentions on a hard tackle. Not to be outdone, Atlético's Yannick Carrasco didn't stop at the ball when he went after Ardo Turan in the 36th minute.
Always in the right place at the right time.
The second half was more notable for both Roberto and Carrasco doing their own personal doubles, collecting hard yellows for a second time each, which ensured they'd get all the warm water they wanted with early showers.
Those were part of five yellows issued before the thought of goals recurred.
It came in the 80th minute, when Los Colchoneros were awarded a shot from the spot on the softest call of the game. But as they say in other sports, ball don't lie:
And with that, Atlético's hopes for a Copa final appearance went the way of the dodo bird.
Yes, Kevin Gameiro finally converted on his second gimme of the game:
What could've been had Gameiro used a five iron on that penalty intstead of a seven iron.
And no, they didn't have a game here because of it.
But they still had the street fight. Four more yellows, who of which put a wooden stake in the Vampire:
This time, it was the ref takin' a bite outta crime.